The 2022/2023 season began last Friday in Prague, so each Friday in this space we will focus on what happened around the NHL over the past seven days.
— There were 20 games played. Nashville was the only team that played three times. Detroit, St. Louis and Winnipeg have yet to play. Home teams went 13-7. Only one game went to overtime and Anaheim defeated Seattle on Troy Terry’s second goal of the game.
— Last season we had only 20 games with a goalie facing 50+ shots. Their combined records were 7-8-5. This week Arizona’s Karel Vejmelka and LA’s Jonathon Quick faced 53 and 51 shots respectively. Both goalies lost.
— Last season there were 136 shutouts by 58 different goalies. Jacob Markstrom led the league with nine, followed by Ilya Sorokin (7) and Igor Shesterkin (6). Vegas’ Logan Thompson posted the only shutout in week one.
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— Artemi Panarin, David Pastrnak, Mikko Rantanen, and Connor McDavid each had a four-point game. Rantanen was the only one with four assists, and McDavid had the only hat trick of the week.
— Mika Zibanejad tied a career-high with nine shots in a game. He had nine shots v. the Penguins on March 14th, 2018 and scored twice, and he did the same, nine shots and two goals, v. the Lightning in the Rangers season opener on Tuesday.
— Nashville led the NHL with 60 fighting majors last season, followed by Anaheim (36) and Minnesota (35). The Predators and Seattle Kraken each had two fights in week one. There was a total of six tilts.
— NHL teams combined to go 37-of-165 for 22.4% on the powerplay in week one. Edmonton was the best going 3-for-4 (75%), followed by Anaheim at 66.7% (2 for 3), Colorado (5 of 10), and Dallas (2 of 4) were 50%.
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— Eight teams were goalless with the man advantage. Nashville didn’t score on 12 chances, Washington on nine, Florida had five, Ottawa, Buffalo and Montreal had four opportunities while Carolina and Columbus had two.
— Eleven teams were perfect on the penalty kill in week one. Toronto killed off nine powerplays, followed by San Jose (7), Vegas, Dallas and the New York Islanders (5), Buffalo, Boston and Montreal (4), and Carolina and Columbus (2).
Vancouver was 30th on the penalty kill last year, and they struggled again in their opening game allowing three goals on four kills. Anaheim killed off only two of five (40%), and Colorado, which scored on half of its powerplays, also allowed a PP goal on half of its penalty kills (4 of 8).
— Under the “Way Too Early, But We Will Still Ask” category…
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Is LA going to struggle? A slow 0-2 start for them.
Is Vegas this good? They are 2-0 and outshot their opponents 88-57.
— Tough back-to-back for Colorado. They played at home on Wednesday but had to fly to Calgary and play Thursday night. That’s a long flight between games. They looked fatigued in Calgary.
— The Coyotes start the season with a six-game road trip, then have four games at home, before a crazy 14-game roadie from November 4th to December 7th. Crazy. I know it is due to their arena facilities, but I won’t be surprised if they only win four or five of their first 24 games.
— Some significant injuries in week one. Mike Matheson is out eight weeks for Montreal. Patrik Laine injured his elbow and is out 3-4 weeks. Laine and newly acquired Johnny Gaudreau were expected to lead the Blue Jackets’ offence. Losing Laine in game one is less than ideal. Jake Debrusk has a thumb injury and is getting more tests to see the severity of it. If he requires surgery, he could be out 6-8 weeks. At minimum he is out two weeks.
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— Rookies Matt Beniers (1-2-3 in two games) and Mason McTavish and Tanner Lacyznski (0-2-2 each) off to good starts. The Calder race is always interesting, and I wonder if we see someone come out of nowhere like Tanner Jeannot did last year with 24 goals for Nashville.

THE SEASON LAUNCH PARTY

For the first time in three seasons, we’re throwing a Season Launch Party at SOHO and you’re all invited to join us! What’s going on? I’m glad you asked.
  • Date: Saturday, October 15th, 2022
  • When: 5:00pm
  • Location: SOHO YEG (11454 Jasper Ave)
  • What’s Included: Entry to the event, Swag Bag (complete with w-shirt, stickers, GCs), entry to the giveaways, after party with RIFF/RAFF
  • How: GET YOUR TICKETS HERE!
As always, we will also be including a charity component with the event where a portion of all ticket sales will be donated directly to Sport Central to help with their mission of providing equipment and bicycles to children in need.